Arbitrators, Hearing Officers and Mediators
Professional Liability Insurance for Arbitrators, Hearing Officers, Mediators, and Parent Coordinators and Educators
For damages resulting from negligent acts, errors or omissions in the conduct of professional services in Arbitration Proceedings, Dispute Resolution Services, Domestic Relations Disputes and/or Parenting Coordination.
Note that coverage for all these services may not be included in all policies, but may be available by endorsement subject to approval by Underwriters.
Limits of Liability Available
- $100,000 / $300,000
- $250,000 / $500,000
- $500,000 / $1,000,000
- $1,000,000 / $1,000,000
Special Coverage Features for all policies
Prior Acts Coverage for claims arising from acts, errors or omissions committed or alleged to have been committed prior to the inception date of the policy.
Assured's staff is covered at no additional cost (including secretaries, file clerks, etc.)
Lower rates for part-time arbitrators/mediators.
Volunteers can be included for coverage.
Costs of Defense is provided the Assured even for alleged dishonest, fraudulent, criminal or intentionally wrongful acts or omissions.
(Note that many of the most requested optional coverages are included in policy.)
- Extended claims reporting period.
- Endorsement adding coverage for professional services not already covered under the policy.
This Professional Liability Insurance Coverage is offered Exclusively for Members of the Associations listed, and verification of membership will be required to purchase this insurance.
Frequently Asked Questions
- I’ve never had professional liability insurance before—how does it work exactly?
- Who is covered?
- How can I pay for my policy?
- I need a specific type of coverage but I don’t see it in the regular policy wording.
- What does “Claims Made” mean?
- How do the limits work?
- What do I need to do to obtain a policy with CEM?
- How does pricing work?
- I’m retiring from mediation/arbitration work, but I’m worried I might get sued for my past acts.
- I need to change something about my policy: add someone, cancel coverage, purchase an endorsement or change my limits during the policy period.
To put it succinctly, if you have one of our policies in effect and you get sued during that time, we will pay both the cost to defend you, and the cost of the damages if you lose, up to the limits you purchase, subject to the policy terms and conditions. Our policies are designed to cover a myriad of conflict resolution activities, including arbitration, mediation, hearing officer work, parent coordination, and a long list of others—if you would like a copy of the full policy wording to review, please send me an email here.
As far as people doing the work of mediating and arbitrating, the people you list on the application and for whom you pay a premium are covered. (If there are not enough spaces for your organization’s professionals, please use an attachment.) Your non-mediating/arbitrating office staff, such as your office aides and receptionist, are covered automatically for their part in your work.
You can mail a check to our address, or authorize an ACH wire transfer from your bank. We are not yet able to accept credit cards.
One thing that’s important to remember is that for most states, we must have your payment in our office in the same month as the effective date of your policy, for tax filing reasons. If you’re relying on the regular U.S. Post Office, remember to leave a little margin of time for your check to arrive here.
Plenty of other coverages are available with an additional premium through endorsements to the policy. Some popular examples are Coaching, Additional Insured, and Training and Teaching. In some cases, we can even write up endorsements specific to one person’s activities. If you need a coverage not listed in the wording, please send me an email with a description of the activities here and I can let you know if that’s something we can cover under this program or, if applicable, approach Underwriters for a customer specific endorsement.
There are two basic types of insurance—“Occurrence” and “Claims Made.” If you have an occurrence type policy (your car insurance is almost certainly this type) then the policy/policy period that pays for a claim is decided based on when the event that gave rise to a claim actually occurs. If your policy is claims made (the professional liability policy we’re discussing) then the policy/policy period that covers a given claim is determined based on when the claim is reported.
So in practice, let’s say you have a policy from January 1, 2016 to January 1, 2017 with CEM, and then the next year you decide to leave and buy your next policy with Other Insurance, LLC (January 1, 2017 to January 1, 2018).
Something happens in December of 2016 which is grounds for a suit, but you don’t get notification that you’re being sued until February 2017. Since the policies are Claims Made, then Other Insurance, LLC covers the claim because it was reported while you were insured with them (in 2017). If the policy was Occurrence based, then CEM would cover the claim because the occurrence happened during our policy period (in 2016).
Our professional liability policies are Claims Made.
The Arbitrators, Hearing Officers and Mediators program has four basic limits:
The first number in each pair is your per-claim limit; this is how much CEM will pay out for any single claim*. If you select the $100K/$300K limit, and are sued for a total of $150,000 in a single lawsuit, then CEM will pay $100,000 of that (after you pay your deductible) and you’d be left to pay the remaining $50,000.
The second number is your aggregate limit; this is how much CEM will pay out, total, for all of your suits in one policy period. If you selected the $100K/$300K limit, and were sued four times for $100,000 each time, even though each individual claim is within the claim limit, the last claim would not be covered because it is outside of your aggregate limit.
This is why it is important to select the limits that are right for you—for your practice, your risk, and the area in which you live and work.
*Please note, the way our policies are structured, whatever limits you choose, you get that set of limits for your liability (how much you can get sued for) and that set of limits again, separately, for your cost of defense (how much it costs to defend you against the suit). So in the scenario listed, if you were sued for a total of $75,000 and it also cost $75,000 to defend you, the $100,000/$300,000 limits would still cover the whole amount, even though it adds up to $150,000.
The first thing we need from you, whether you are new or renewing, is a completed, current application. You can mail, email or fax that to us, or apply online here; once you hit submit, you and I will both receive a copy.
Our policies are priced specifically to match our clients’ activities, and the amount of risk that those activities pose. Each question on the application is part of an algorithm that generates your specific price. We only want you paying for the coverage that you are going to use, after all.
You have the option, once you are no longer working, to purchase an Extended Claims Reporting Period (or “tail coverage”) in yearly or bi-yearly increments, if you were insured with us at the time of your retirement. Just let us know within 30 days of your policy expiring, and we’ll invoice you for the ERP premium. While this does not cover any acts you do after your active policy expires, it will maintain the coverage for your past acts as far back as your retroactive date with us.
Any time you need to change anything about your policy, we always need notice from you in writing. You’re free to call us to discuss changes, but you’ll still need to send an email afterward, so that we have a written record of you requesting the change. If you are adding an endorsement or increasing your limits, we will send you an invoice, pro-rated for the portion of the policy period remaining at the time the change becomes effective. If you are canceling coverage* or removing an endorsement, we will send you a check for the return premium.
*Remember, our policies are claims made, so if you cancel your coverage entirely without purchasing an ERP (refer to FAQ numbers 6 and 9) and someone informs they’re suing you after the cancellation date, that suit will not be covered.
For more information
- Kaitlyn Hassall